Across the multiverse, a story is played out continually. An intelligent teenager is bitten by a mutated spider. The bite gives them the proportionate strength and speed of a spider as well as an adhesive touch and a precognitive awareness of danger. They go on to use their new powers to try and help others.
In this time and this place, the teenager is a young woman named Gwen Stacy.
Gwen has done a lot and seen a lot more in her short life. As Spider-Woman, she contended with super-spies, mad-scientists and ninjas. She’s fought the government and even traveled to other dimensions. She’s also a recently released criminal, who did time as penance for when she failed to use her powers responsibly and felt she needed to pay the price for it.
Now, Gwen is trying to figure out what to do with her life. With the whole world aware of her once-secret identity (and, annoyingly, calling her Spider-Gwen instead of Spider-Woman), she’s not sure if she can go back to being the hero she once was. Unfortunately fate (and a pushy little pig-man from another reality) aren’t giving Gwen any choice in the matter. The world-spanning evils she fought once before have returned and Gwen will be ready to face them. She just wish she had a better code name to take into battle.
Spider-Gwen: Ghost-Spider #1 is that rarest of all gems – a comic-book event tie-in that doesn’t require any previous knowledge of the character or the events of at least three other comics. That is doubly impressive given that this is also the start of a new Spider-Gwen series and the first not to be handled by Spider-Gwen’s original creative team.
You would never know it, however, as Seanan McGuire and Rosi Kampe pick up right where the last Spider-Gwen volume left-off. So if all you know about the character comes from her appearance in the trailers for Spider-Man: Into The Spider-Verse, rest easy. This one volume will give you everything you need to know about Gwen Stacy and Spider-Geddon in one handy book. They even explain Peter Porker, The Spectacular Spider-Ham, who somehow manages to not be the strangest thing in the book by a long-shot.
Spider-Gwen: Ghost-Spider #1 does everything a first issue should. It introduces us to Gwen, revealing her as a funny, brilliant and self-depreciating hero. It gives us the broad particulars of her life since the last series but doesn’t bog us down with continuity. And like all great the great Spider-Man comics of yore, it gives us a bit of action and a little drama amidst the punchlines while setting up one heck of a cliff-hanger. The artwork matches the story beat for beat, flowing smoothly from panel to panel. The colors are suitably eye-catching and there’s one heck of an awesome new villain who should prove quite the interesting foil for Gwen in the coming issues.
Bottom-Line: Spider-Gwen: Ghost-Spider #1 is a fun, easily accessible superhero book that is as friendly to kids as it is to new readers. It’s well-written, well-drawn and you’ll want to beat the rush to get it now. Face front, True Believers! This is the real deal.
Spider-Gwen: Ghost Spider #1 releases on October 24, 2018!
Written by The Critic The Internet Deserves, but not the one it needs right now…. Matt Morrison. He’s a smart-ass guardian. A sarcastic protector. A Snark Knight.